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‘Paddington 2’: A charming, whimsical kids film parents will like, too

January 10, 2018 GMT

‘Paddington 2’: A charming, whimsical kids film parents will like, too

CLEVELAND, Ohio – It’s the rare sequel that is better than the original. “The Godfather: Part II.” “The Dark Knight.” “Toy Story 3.” “Nymphomaniac Vol. II.”

Add “Paddington 2” to the list. The follow-up to the 2015 movie based on author Michael Bond’s classic books about the marmalade-loving bear from “darkest Peru” who travels to London when his home is destroyed, is a smart, charming and kindhearted treat. It’s also the rare film that is as entertaining for adults as children.

Three years after the original, Paddington has settled in nicely with the Brown family in their enchanting London townhouse — quirky mother Mary Brown (the divine Sally Hawkins), dorky risk-analyst father Henry (Hugh Bonneville), teenage Judy (Madeleine Harris) and tween Jonathan (Samuel Joslin).

Paddington (voiced by Ben Whishaw) is part of the neighborhood now, making friends and helping out anyone who needs it. He also gets into more than a fair bit of innocent trouble — he STILL doesn’t know what toothbrushes are for — in a series of very funny gag sequences.

Paddington wants more than anything to send a nice gift to his aunt Lucy back in Peru. When he stumbles upon an antique “popping book” of London sites at Mr. Gruber’s curiosity shop, he is smitten. But Paddington isn’t the only one after the book. After sharing news of his find at a fantastic old steam-punk circus with thespian Phoenix Buchanan (a wonderfully campy Hugh Grant, who ALMOST steals the film from the furry star), it’s taken.

What follows is a hilarious and wonderfully whimsical movie filled with fanciful Wes Anderson-worthy sequences and heartfelt goodness — even when it is set in a dank Victorian prison. Marmalade-loving Paddington will sweeten the day of anyone, young or just young at heart, in this delightful sequel.

REVIEW

Paddington 2

Who: Directed by Paul King. With Hugh Grant, Sally Hawkins, Hugh Bonneville, Ben Whishaw.

Rated: Rated PG for some action and mild rude humor.

Running time: 105 minutes.

When: Opens Friday

Where: Area theaters

Grade: A